More couples divorce to receive dead parent’s pension

More couples divorce to receive dead parent’s pension


February 17, 2012, Friday/ 15:23:00/ TODAY'S ZAMAN

The Social Security Institution (SGK) has received more than 6,000 tip-offs over the past 15 months that couples divorce on a consensual basis in order to receive a deceased parent's pension, according to an SGK report.

According to data from the SGK, it received 6,178 tip-offs about consensual divorce through calls made to “Alo 170 Hattı,” the SGK's information line, between Nov. 15, 2010 and Feb. 15, 2012, the Akşam daily reported on Friday. The individuals who have made the phone calls to the SGK usually claim that couples they know live together even though they are officially divorced in order to receive a deceased parent's pensions.

SGK inspectors have established that a great majority of tip-offs proved to be accurate in their claims and that numerous couples indeed continue to live together despite being divorced. The couples do so in order to receive the pensions of a deceased parent as unmarried women by law receive a parent's pension.

The SGK has launched an investigation into consensual divorces. Acting on information received via the SGK information line, SGK inspectors are working to verify whether or not the couples in question are living still together after a consensual divorce. The SGK will not only cut the pensions received by those who are deemed to have deceived the institution, but also launch legal action against them. They will also be made to pay back the money they have received so far with interest.

The SGK noticed that those who are making the calls to the SGK to disclose such cases are usually relatives or neighbors of the couples in question.

A murder occurred in Zonguldak province's Çaycuma district in October of last year related to this issue, when Kemal keskin killed his brother in-law İsmail Gençer after a dispute broke out between the two.

Keskin reportedly told the Zonguldak Provincial Directorate of the SGK that his sister, Asiye Keskin, divorced her husband in order to receive her deceased father's pension, even though the couple continued to live together. Upon this information, the SGK cut the woman's pension and took legal action against her. The couple learnt that Keskin reported them to the SGK and that a dispute broke out between Keskin and Gençer, which resulted in Gençer's death. A court subsequently ordered the arrest of Keskin. 

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